Extraterritorial Issues

As states passed workers compensation laws starting in the early 1900s through 1949, each state established its unique workers compensation system. This resulted in a mishmash of laws, benefits, compensability and eligibility from state to state.

Determining what benefits apply is complicated because the varying states focus only on what their laws require.  Courts have ruled that a state has the right to apply its own workers compensation rules and standards to each case. Hence, most states simply don’t care what other states allow, only what is required under their workers compensation laws.  This lack of coordination and cooperation between states in addition to the variations in individual states’ laws, state funds and monopolistic states difficulties, piggybacking of benefits worries, coverage concerns — just to name a few complications — often combine to create ambiguity and significant challenges for employers, insurance agents and other workers compensation stakeholders.

While there is no silver bullet that solves the conundrum of workers compensation’s extraterritorial issues, stakeholders can minimize and/or avoid many of the common pitfalls of extraterritorial issues that can result in a lack of coverage leading to uncovered claims, penalties, criminal prosecution and financial hardship.  The white paper entitled Workers Compensation Extraterritorial Issues has been recently expanded and updated. Written by Maureen Gallagher, the insurance industry’s foremost expert on extraterritorial issues, the paper provides clarity, insight and practical advice to insurance professionals grappling with many of these issues.  The white paper is an indispensable, in-depth study enhanced by Gallagher’s expert analysis.  It is information that needs to be in every insurance agent’s knowledge base.

Now available here: States of Confusion – WC Extraterritorial Issues – 2-17 Edition

Loss Projections & Collateral Determination

Workers Compensation Small Medical Claims – To Pay or Not to Pay? – COMING SOON!

Should an employer pay — or continue to pay — small workers compensation medical bills rather than submitting them to the insurance carriers for payment?  This paper examines why employers have adopted this practice and deconstructs the myth that paying small medical claims reduces the employer’s premiums and experience modification in all situations.  In fact, the opposite can be true. Like most workers compensation issues, the answer is not simple and will vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction.  Comprehensive and informative, this 30-page white paper is loaded with state-specific information.

Independent Contractors and Workers Compensation – COMING SOON!

Independent contractors – that is whether or not a worker is an employee or not – is a complex issue. Workers compensation adds another layer of complexity. Rules imposed by the IRS and various states can be contradicted and overruled at least at it relate to workers compensation insurance requirements. Whereas a worker may qualify as an independent contractor by the state’s laws, the state’s own workers compensation rules can mandate the worker be classified as an employee at least at it relates to workers compensation insurance.  Agents and employers relying on state and other governmental laws, rules and guidelines in making independent contractor/employee decisions — without considering the workers compensation insurance ramifications — may be subject to fines, penalties, additional premiums at audit, tort litigation or liability for an uncovered claim. Many of the issues involving independent contractors are created by the varied and non-uniform state laws. Comprehensive and informative, this 30-page paper is loaded with state-specific information.